Stephen Petronio Company is owed around $6,000 from NYCharities. Photo by Yi-Chun Wu, Courtesy Stephen Petronio Company.

In theory, NYCharities was a small dance company's dream. Free to use, the nonprofit acted as a clearinghouse for companies to accept credit and debit card donations online. It also allowed companies to sell tickets to galas and events, set up recurring donations and even give donors the option to pay processing fees themselves—an important feature for dance companies with small budgets.

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The 2,500 square foot studio has radiant floor-heat and a sprung floor. Photo by Nora Thompson, Courtesy Everyman Agency

This summer, the Petronio Residency Center at Crow's Nest welcomes its first three artists in residence: Nora Chipaumire, Will Rawls and Kathy Westwater. The center, located in the Catskill Mountains, about two and a half hours north of New York City, is idyllic: The 2,500-square-foot studio has radiant floor-heat and a sprung floor, and the 6,500-square-foot house sleeps up to 10 people and has soaring views of the mountains. "As a creator, I understand the power of a residency," says Stephen Petronio. "I want the dancers to feel like they have gone to heaven when they pull up to the gate."

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Former Merce Cunningham Dance Company members Andrea Weber and Rashaun Mitchell in Antic Meet. Photo by Yi-Chun Wu, Courtesy MCDC

Merce Cunningham would have been 99 years old today, and, as a present to the dance world, the Merce Cunningham Trust has announced a dizzying array of celebrations to unfold over the next year in honor of the groundbreaking choreographer's 2019 centennial.

"Merce liked saying he didn't want to celebrate his birthday, and yet he always enjoyed when we threw parties for him," Trevor Carlson, producer of the Merce Cunningham Centennial, said in a press release. Though the Merce Cunningham Dance Company shuttered in 2011 (two years after the choreographer's death, per his wishes), plans to celebrate his legacy range from performances to film screenings to workshops to education programs to dinner parties.

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Ballet Hispanico's Jenna Marie Graves. Photo by Paula Lobo, Courtesy Michelle Tabnick Communications

One choreographer wants to explore ideas through improvisation; another demands quick pickup of specific steps. One might demonstrate ideas physically; another may rely on language and gestures imbued with feeling. Puzzling out how to thrive in ever-changing creative environments is an ongoing practice, but a little preparation and the right mindset can go a long way.

Yusha-Marie Sorzano. Photo by Chris Cameron

Demote Inner Critics

Moving past internal expectations and fantasies of instant perfection expands your ability to participate in generating work. "It's okay if you don't get it at first," says Yusha-Marie Sorzano, who dances with Camille A. Brown. Repeating phrases over time, or even getting some distance from them, can help material start to feel natural, Sorzano says. Letting go of expectations can take some anxiety out of the learning experience.

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Lazarus of Manhattan

With athletic bodies bounding and slicing through space, Stephen Petronio Company brings the premiere of his full-length work, LIKE LAZARUS DID, to the Joyce. It’s set to live music by alternative hip-hop composer Son Lux and the generation-Y chamber group yMusic, as well as the adolescent voices of The Young People’s Chorus of New York City—all contributing to the work’s central theme of resurrection. It’s an interesting concept for the company’s 29th year; though Petronio’s constantly shifting work has yet to hit its mid-life crisis. April 30–May 5. See —Jenny Dalzell


Barrington Hinds of Stephen Petronio Company. Photo by Sarah Silver, Courtesy Petronio.

Isadora, the Revolutionary

Isadora Duncan didn’t just flow like a river and skip like the wind. She also marched like a soldier, protested like a laborer, and fought like a Bolshevik. This month, Lori Belilove & The Isadora Duncan Dance Company reprises some of these more strident dances in “The Marches!” Made between 1902 to 1916 to music by Berlioz, Schubert, and Tchaikovsky, they are performed by adults and children. There will be tragedy, hope, and determination for all. Ailey Citigroup Theater May 16–18. See —Wendy Perron


Lori Belilove in Isadora Duncan’s Revolutionary. Photo by Darial Sneed, Courtesy Belilove.



Viva Vivo

In celebration of Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana’s 30th anniversary, the seven-member company, accompanied by four musicians, will perform the premiere of guest artist Ángel Muñoz’s A Solas, at the Joyce. Also on the program are Roberto Lorca’s rhythmically demanding Luz y Sombra and Antonio Hidalgo’s emotional Mujeres. The company, founded by Santana with Roberto Lorca, is now among the most brilliant of U.S.–based flamenco troupes. Through workshops, classes, national tours, and community events, Santana has inspired people all over the country to learn flamenco and to support its performance. May 29–June 2. See —Valerie Gladstone


Leslie Roybal, leading dancer and teaching artist of Flamenco Vivo. Photo by Angelica Escoto, Courtesy FVCS.




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